Teaching point of view to young students

When considering  teaching peaceful classroom or conflict resolution skills to preschoolers, the most important developmental aspect to keep in mind is that they are unable to see another person’s point of view.

They are very egocentric. They have, however, a natural developmental capacity for empathy that needs to be allowed to flourish.

Have you had the experience of sharing stories in circle time with preschoolers and one child had a sad story to tell? Maybe his dog died and he started to cry. The next thing you know, several children are crying inconsolably. What happened? Empathy happened.

Preschoolers have the emotional ability to pick up on the feelings of other children and to match them to their own. If, in a given situation, they cannot do this, it is often because they do not have the vocabulary for the emotion. They cannot identify with the feeling if they cannot label it.

Therefore an excellent tool to use with preschoolers is one of those posters with all the labeled ‘emotion’ faces.  Children can spot how they’re feeling on the poster. You can give them the name for the emotion. As they develop a vocabulary for their emotions, they are able to empathize with that emotion.

You can find a Moodz Poster by clicking on the link.

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